- The Washington Times - Monday, March 7, 2016

Writing in the pages of National Review on Monday, a group of influential Catholic leaders made an appeal to their fellow believers not to vote for Republican primary front-runner Donald Trump.

“We urge our fellow Catholics and all our fellow citizens to reject his candidacy for the Republican presidential nomination by supporting a genuinely reformist candidate,” the letter pleads.

The primary authors of the missive, Princeton University professor Robert George and Ethics and Public Policy Center fellow George Weigel, said Mr. Trump is “manifestly unfit to be president of the United States” and does not represent Catholic values.

“His campaign has already driven our politics down to new levels of vulgarity,” the writers say. “His appeals to racial and ethnic fears and prejudice are offensive to any genuinely Catholic sensibility.”

“And there is nothing in his campaign or previous record that gives us grounds for confidence that he genuinely shares our commitments to the right to life, to religious freedom and the rights of conscience, to rebuilding the marriage culture, or to subsidiarity and the principle of limited constitutional government,” the letter continues.

The letter is signed by dozens of prominent Catholic thought leaders, including the Heritage Foundation’s Ryan T. Anderson, Brian Burch, president of CatholicVote.org, and Ann Corkery, founder of Catholic Voices USA.

The plea comes after polls that show Mr. Trump with a surprising level of support among Catholic Republicans.

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